I used to have periods with several nights in a row when I just couldn’t sleep. I was tired but my brain just didn’t want to stop thinking and worrying. The more I thought about something, the worse it would get in my head. After many hours of tossing and turning, when I would finally fall asleep, those thoughts would affect my dreams and I woke up feeling restless, tired and not in the mood for anything.
Usually my thoughts would revolve around work and occasionally personal life, I don’t remember much of the details, because it’s been awhile since I didn’t have a good night sleep, but stress from work, not living a healthy lifestyle and the way I chose to spend my few free hours between work and bed influenced my thinking a lot. That is why that after my recent post on 6 ways to relax after work, I thought I would give you some suggestions that I found useful for dealing with sleepless nights.
- The first thing I do right now is air out the bedroom. I do this about an hour before bedtime and repeat it in the morning. Our apartment is quite small, so if we cook, the smell tends to get into the bedroom also. Fresh air is helps oxygenate your brain before going to bed and it busts stress and increases happiness.
- Aside from fresh air in your bedroom, take a walk or a small run before bed if you feel like you can. Even though you work in a busy work environment such as retail for where you are constantly on your feet and is exhausted, taking a small walk before bedtime gets your more of that good fresh air, changes the environment a bit, helps with your mood and gives you a chance to clear your mind before going to bed.
- Try to have a light dinner. I used to come home starving and since I love fast foods and all the greasy foods, I would eat a lot and then just feel bad, tired in my stomach and bloated from all those empty calories. Now my dinners can still be be big but I try to have the majority be vegetables for almost all my meals. I don’t remember the last time I did not have vegetables on my plate for dinner. Since I eat many small meals during the day, I don’t feel so hungry at night and I go to sleep with a lighter stomach.
- Creating a cozy atmosphere while cooking and eating is so important to me. I always have candles burning in all the rooms of my apartment (it’s just two + the bathroom to be clear haha) and I like listening to a little bit of jazz. You see it in movie all the time and I love doing it also. I used to also drink a glass of red wine here and there but I try to cut down my wine intake as much as possible, especially before bed.
- A common reason people can’t sleep at night is stress. And stress comes in many different ways, work, personal life and so on. I’ve only experienced work stress so far, so that’s why I associate everything with that. Doing what I love now has probably changed my life. I have things to do, I might still stress about some stuff but it’s still different. I go to sleep and I say to myself, good things will happen to me, I know. Instead of having bad thoughts and experiences from the day rolling around in my head, I choose to dream. That’s right! I dream about many things that I want to happen to me in the future and if I don’t dream then I try to visualise a peaceful place – a beach for me and focus on how relaxed that place makes me feel.
- I avoid watching movies too late, especially scary ones or movies that gets the adrenaline pumping. Before bed I personally like shows that are a bit funny, make me laugh and doesn’t require too much deep thinking. Of course a book is the best remedy for a good night’s sleep if movies or shows are not something you usually do.
All these habits that I suggested you, are actually things that I changed about myself and my lifestyle, it’s not like something you can buy from a store and boom you go home and have a good night’s sleep. It takes time to find the right way for a positive lifestyle change because everyone is different and has different challenges to face.
What do you do for a good night sleep?